Bullet Journaling Changed My Life - 7 Reasons Why

Since I’ve started bullet journaling back in March, things have taken a complete turn in my life, for the better!

At the start of this year, I was feeling so down in the dumps. I’ve never been so miserable! I needed something that was going to benefit my own well-being and would help to lift me up, allow me to be productive, and give me some kind of creative outlet where I could focus on something and forget all the things that were bothering me.

That’s where bullet journaling came to my rescue. One miserable Friday night, I made a spontaneous trip to Rymans (wild night, I know - living my best life), and bought so many stationery supplies. Like seriously, you would not believe how many.

Here are the 7 ways bullet journaling turned my life around:

1. Feeling like I have a grip on things

Sometimes I don’t think you realise how bad things are until there’s a change. I didn’t realise at the time how out of control I felt, in regards to everything. Whether it be weekend plans, my blog, my health, my life! I was floating through life thinking that I had it together, for the most part anyway, and that’s just how things would be.

Oh, how wrong I was.

Bullet journals are traditionally composed of logs and collections. Logs to track what’s happening that year, month, week, right down to the day, and collections to track things you like, films you’ve enjoyed, favourite recipes, workouts, if you can think of it, you can have a collection for it. It was these parts of bullet journaling combined which really helped me get my shit together.

At first, I didn’t really have much to write in all my logs. Pretty depressing huh? But that gave me a little kick on the behind to start planning stuff. To plan things that I’d be able to look forward to, to track my favourite things (it now gives binging that series on Netflix a bit of extra purpose!).

Since starting my bujo (bullet journal, let’s get down with the lingo) back in March, I’ve done so many exciting things. I’ve planned fun days out, I’ve attended and booked in events I want to go to in the coming months. And I’ve got somewhat of a weekly routine figured out. It’s not perfect, but of course it’s not, that’s real life! But I’m actually making a conscious effort now to fill up my journal with exciting things happening in the future. Every time I open it I see something I can look forward to. It’s an instant dose of happiness.

2. Habit trackers

Back when I was browsing the interwebs high and low for bujo inspiration, (I still do this daily) habit trackers would always catch my eye. I find it SO COOL to see what I’m doing daily and to have a record of it. Habit trackers are eye opening. I love how everyone’s is different. We all track different things, we’ve all got different areas we want to focus on, and I love that!

A habit tracker is like a window into someone else’s life. I genuinely find it fascinating. I find my habit tracker really motivating. I don’t know what it is about the pleasure of colouring in a tiny square in my journal, but it makes me (at least try to) get shit done.

Even if I’m having the busiest day, and don’t have masses of time for my journal, I’ll always try to dedicate five minutes to fill out my habit tracker for the day.

3. Collections

I don’t know about others who have started a bullet journal, but for me, the sheer amount of collection ideas out there was overwhelming at first. I remember setting up my journal and not really knowing where to begin. People have such beautiful designs, and useful, wonderful collections, it can all be a bit intimidating!

I’ve found that over time, I’ve stopped seeking out collections that I must include, and have instead found inspiration when I’m least expecting it. Don’t feel pressured to add lots of collections when you first start. Some of my favourite collections have actually been ones that I’ve drawn through half way through my journal. Collection ideas will come to you when you need/want them.

Some of my favourite collections in my journal are:

- A reading List
- Podcasts tracker
- Tv/film watch list
- Favourite artists

4. Daily Logs

At first I remember thinking, “I’m never going to write in daily logs.” LOL just look at me now! To be honest, a the very beginning I didn’t really write much in my daily logs. But now, some days each box I have drawn for the days can be full! I use my daily logs as a bit of a free for all for my brain. I jot down ideas, things I need to do, things I’ve done that I don’t want to forget, reminders, train times, events, you name it, it’s in there.

By jotting everything down, it gives me space to think. I didn’t realise before bullet journaling, but I think my head used to be quite cluttered. I’m not a very forgetful person, but I’d constantly be thinking to myself, “Oh that’s happening later, I mustn't forget,” or “That’s a great idea for my blog, I must remember it for later”. There was just a lot going on, a lot whirring around my brain. Now, I get it all written down, and in some ways, it lets me let go of everything. There’s no pressure to remember bits and bobs because I know it’s safely written down in my bullet journal.

I would strongly recommend you also have a brain dump page in each month of your bujo! It will come in very handy as the days and months go by!

5. Not looking at a screen all day

I work in an office, where my entire job involves me staring at a screen all day. I then get home and used to unwind by also starting at a screen all evening. Whether that be the TV, my laptop, or just my phone! And don’t forget blogging, that all happens with me sat in front of my laptop too!

Bullet journaling has helped give me that time where I’m away from the screen. It’s still within reach, and I do like to fill in my journal whilst watching TV, but I’m not glued to it. It gives my eyes a break and makes me feel better. Sometimes looking at a screen for too long can make me feel sick, stifled, and trapped. My bullet journal is a bit of an escape in that sense. It’s real, it exists. It’s a physical object in the real world. It’s also really rewarding looking back on your journal, and being able to say, I did that. I drew that, or I made that page look the way it does. It’s very satisfying knowing you did it and not a computer.

6. It’s a great creative outlet

As a kid, I used to be quite a creative child, but during my early teen, this dwindled. I didn’t really think I was any good at being creative, so I just stopped. Bullet journaling has given me a wave of new ideas and a love for drawing has surfaced. Who knew?

Bullet journals can be what you want them to be. At first it can sometimes be a little tricky to figure out what kind of style you want to have in your journal. I remember at first I wanted it to look and feel quite like a scrapbook. I wanted to have lots of colour on each page, and stick things in, like tickets, mementos, you get the picture. However, I then discovered some awesome videos on YouTube featuring some more minimalistic bullet journals, and they looked amazing! So then I was torn.

Since then, I’ve ended up somewhere in the middle with my bujo style. I like to doodle in any gaps, and stick special things in, or at least keep them in the folder at the back (concert tickets etc), but I also really love keeping some pages super minimal.

I love mixing up the styles and colours each month, including my layouts for each type of log. It lets me see what’s working and what’s not, and the best bit? If I don’t like something I just change it next time. No worries.

I’d also recommend buying some washi tape. If you’re ever having trouble setting up a page, use this - it will work wonders!

7. Boosted My Motivation - for everything!

As I mentioned earlier, at the beginning of this year I was in real need of a pick me up. I didn’t really have anything concrete in my head goal-wise and was just fumbling through everything feeling rather lost. Starting a bullet journal has helped me change this. It’s given me a way to monitor how things are going, and help me plan out how I’m going to work towards things I care about. Whether that be paying more attention to skin care, exercising more, or reading more. I use my bullet journal as a tracker for so many things, and it keeps me motivated. At the end of the day, the more I can tick off in my journal, the more accomplished I feel.

To sum it all up, if you’ve never heard of bullet journaling, head over to Pinterest RIGHT NOW and take a look at my bujo inspiration board. You will be fixated on all the things you can do with a bujo. Give it a go, seriously. Bullet journaling has made me really happy and focused, which was unexpected! I thought I’d probably give up after a day or so, and yet here we are over 3 months later!

This post all commences the beginning of a bullet journal series I’m going to be writing. I’m not going to put a number on it because I’m learning new things about bujo methods every day, so I will share things for as long as I can! Check back next week to read all about my favourite bullet journal collections.

Much love